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Nichola Goddard.com
 
Nichola Goddard.
Born to British and Canadian school teachers in Madang, Papua New Guinea, Nichola Goddard spent most of her childhood in various locations, including Black Lake and Lac La Ronge, Saskatchewan. She attended Jr. High in Edmonton, Alberta, and High school in Antigonish, Nova Scotia. Nicknamed "Carebear", by her ski team in Nova Scotia, her hobbies included cross-country skiing and running, and she had competed in biathlon events. She led a local Scout troop with her fiancé (later husband), Jason Beam, while they were officer cadets at the Royal Military College, in Kingston, Ontario and owned two dogs and two cats.

Captain Goddard arrived in Afghanistan in January 2006, and had been serving with Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry as a forward observation officer at the time of her death; her parent unit was the 1st Regiment Royal Canadian Horse Artillery.

The Battle
Nichola was killed on May 17, 2006, during a firefight in the Panjwaye District. It was part of a joint two-day operation between Canadian and Afghan troops, to secure Kandahar's outskirts after a rumor of Taliban preparations to launch an assault on the city. As troops were moving into a mosque to capture 15 alleged Taliban members, several dozen hidden militants began firing from neighbouring houses. As a crew commander, she was standing half-exposed in her LAV III, which was hit by two rocket-propelled grenades early in the battle. The battle ended after approximately 45 minutes, shortly after an American B-1 Lancer dropped a 225kg bomb. In the end, the two-day operation saw Nichola, an Afghan National Army soldier, and 40 Taliban killed, as well as approximately 20 Taliban captured, which early reports mistakenly said could have included Mullah Dadullah.

After effects
Prime Minister Stephen Harper was the first to mention the death, opening a Parliamentary debate hours later, stating that he wasn't certain it was a "first" female combat death for Canada, and that he wouldn't release her name until her husband had been notified.

It was later announced that her husband Jason Beam would be the first widower to receive the Memorial Cross.[2] The Memorial Cross (also known as the Silver Cross) has traditionally been presented to widows and mothers of Canadian war dead.

She was also posthumously awarded the Meritorious Service Medal on Oct 27, 2006

After Nichola's death, policies have changed on the traditions of presenting the Memorial Cross to widows or mothers of the ones killed. Now, members of the Canadian Forces are required to choose who will receive the Memorial Cross(es) (a maximum of three).


The Return Home
The family arranged for a public funeral at St. Barnabas Anglican Church in Calgary, held on Friday May 26th, 2006. She is buried in Ottawa's National Military Cemetery.
 
 

5th Annual Fundraiser
The 5th annual fundraiser was a great success. Over $25,000 was raised. There was a sell-out crowd who enjoyed a fabulous meal and a wonderful talk by Canada's first female astronaut, Dr Roberta Bondar.

Many thanks to all those who volunteered for the event and all the people who donated items for the silent auction. ...
New Calgary school named after fallen soldier Nichola Goddard
New Calgary school named after fallen soldier Nichola Goddard
Capt. Nichola Goddard’s name will live on in the walls of a new Calgary school, one of four opening this year. - read full article here

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Sunray
Valerie Fortney of The Calgary Herald was awarded a contract to write Sunray for Key Porter Books. The book is now available for purchase.

ISBN# 155470300X

Order this book:
Indigo/Chapters | Amazon | Independent


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